Last week, we looked at how using a research guide could, inter alia, send a researcher to quality primary and secondary sources. This week, let's look at how to find research guides. There are two major ways: (1) go to a site that you know has lots of great quality research guides and (2) search for research guides using Google or one of the research guide search engines.
Professional legal researchers are well aware of the value of a good research guide. Many law librarians try to post and maintain as many legal research guides as possible on their websites. Here are some of the top research guide sites. You might be surprised to see that two of them are commercial sites...
- University of Washington, Gallagher Law Library. There are over a hundred research guides posted on this site. In addition to guides on legal research topics there is an eclectic collection of guides on such diverse topics as Rubin Carter (The Hurricane) and Themis (the Greek goddess of justice).
- Georgetown Law Library. First, you will want to look at the Research Guides page for subject specific guides. Perhaps more importantly, you will want to look at the "how to" guides and tutorials. These latter are often assigned in Advanced Legal Research courses.
- Harvard Law School Library has a strong research guide and tutorial page. There are not as many subject specific guides but the tutorials are excellent.
- LLRX. This is a truly amazing resource. The main page is here. The subject specific guides are here. This site also supports a daily blog, beSpacific.com that you should follow if you are interested in law and technology.
- Zimmerman's Research Guide. The apt subtitle is "An Online Encyclopedia for Legal Researchers." Although the "encyclopedia" (a series of subject specific research guides) is maintained on a LexisNexis site, Zimmerman is not afraid to recommend sources from other publishers, including big blue, Westlaw.
This is just a short list. There are dozens of academic sites that have quality legal research guides - Duke, Cornell, UCLA to mention a few. How do you find those guides? Look for a post later this week on how to search for legal research guides. You might be surprised how easy it is.